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By Suzanne Kelman

GENRE: Drama, Historical
LOGLINE: In Nazi occupied Holland, to save the life of a hidden Jewish student stricken with a life threatening illness, a reclusive professor deliberately contracts the deadly disease to get the cure.


In Nazi occupied Holland, Professor Josef Held, a myopic recluse who never looks up to see the world, is irrevocably changed when he reluctantly agrees to hide Michael Blum, a rebellious Jewish university student. Feeling compelled, he agrees to hide Michael in his attic for one night only during a raid. Circumstances arise that make it impossible for Michael to leave safely and they form an unlikely bond. In close quarters, they manage to navigate the horrors of war together, but tensions escalate when an aggressive Nazi commander becomes romantically involved with the professor’s niece and they begin dropping by unannounced. When a particularly close encounter leaves both men shaken, Michael impulsively leaves abruptly during the night to protect his new friend. Josef unexpectedly finds his world devoid of life once Michael disappears. He begins to look up and connect with the world around him. One night, a haggard Michael collapses in the snow outside Josef’s back door having no where else to hide. Josef manages to get Michael up the stairs to the attic, alarmed that he is very ill. Unable to take his young Jewish friend to the hospital, Josef attempts to get the medicine he needs to save Michael’s life but is refused unless he can show symptoms himself. Risking everything, he makes a desperate, life threatening decision to contract the disease in order to find the cure. *Held means “hero” in Dutch and is a common Dutch name. The Screenwriters Suzanne Kelman is an award-winning screenwriter. Her last script Maggie the Brave was optioned by Moviehatch in 2010. The same script also won “Best Feature Comedy Screenplay” at the 2011 Los Angeles United Film Festival. “Honorable Mentions” at the Los Angeles Script and Film Festival and Skyfest IV Film and Script Festival. Rose Woods is a screenwriter and playwright. She has been awarded a commendation from Senator Barbara Boxer for her youth theater and is the recipient of a number of awards for both her writing and directing, including the Humanitarian Teacher of the Year Award and the Bay Area Critics Award. Held has recently won the 2011 Gold Award Winner at the California Film Awards and the 2011 Love Unlimited Film Festival. Contact us at Goody 2 Productions Or (Tel) 360.544.8341


Background story of the script Held: The journey of the story of Held began ten years ago when screenwriter Rose Woods, read a story in a holocaust survivor museum. It was a short story on a small plaque, telling the story of an anonymous Dutch man living under Nazi occupation who decided to intentionally contract a deadly disease in order to get the medicine needed to save the life of a hidden Jewish man. Rose was so touched by the story that she immediately wrote it on the back of an envelope and vowed to use the seed of that one brave act to tell a story one day. Over the years the envelope became lost, but the story never left her heart. Ten years later, as she was forming a writing partnership, Goody 2 Productions, with another writer Suzanne Kelman, she relayed the touching story to her. The powerful message of the story profoundly affected Suzanne in the same way and they made the decision that it was time for the story to be told. As the writers started to research the history, they became overwhelmed at the amount of unsung hero stories, particularly from the Dutch resistance. Overthrown in just five days, Holland was the most policed by Nazi’s. But they were also the most vocal about the unfair treatment of the Jewish population. Even so, the Netherlands lost the highest amount of Jewish citizens; over 107,000 Jewish people were taken out of Holland and less than 25%, around 5000, returned home. In light of those numbers, it makes the bravery of ordinary Dutch citizens who risked their lives on a daily basis to save the 30,000 Jewish people who survived in hiding in Holland, so much more poignant. It’s been said nations of heroes do not exist, but among the Dutch tens of thousands of ordinary human beings, men and women, saved the country’s soul, even though more than ten thousand in the resistance lost their lives as a direct result of their efforts. Held is our tribute to their bravery.

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